Passenger flights emitted greenhouse gasses equivalent to 900 million tons of carbon dioxide last year, but more and more airlines are using carbon offsets to reduce their impacts. Yesterday, EasyJet became the first airline to offset all emissions from its use of jet fuel in an effort to become carbon neutral.
US President Donald Trump has ensured climate change will be a top issue in the 2020 presidential race by formally serving notice to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement the day after next year’s election. Long expected, the formal announcement will focus attention on regional efforts within the United States and international efforts to move forward if Trump wins reelection in 2020.
1 November 2019 | Madrid will host the 25th Conference of the Parties (COP 25) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) from December 2 through 13, the UNFCCC announced today. The talks, originally planned to take place in Brazil, were switched to Chile late last year, after the election of Jair […]
A new study finds that the land sector could account for nearly one-third of the climate mitigation necessary to keep global temperatures below a 1.5-degree-Celsius (2.7-degree-Fahrenheit) rise over pre-industrial levels as referenced in the 2015 Paris climate accords.
Chile’s withdrawal from hosting this year’s climate talks echoes the 2016 talks, or “COP 23,” which were moved to the former German capital of Bonn after the host country, Fiji, was unable to physically host the event. That substitution required more than a year of planning, but many in Germany believe the country can and should host again.
As two dozen Republican congressmen were disrupting the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump’s activities, the president himself was in Pittsburg threatening to accelerate his withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement, and his attorneys were filing a suit in California to block a landmark cross-border climate arrangement.
In the United States, species and wetland markets are built on the concept of “no net loss,” which often requires extensive surveying to determine exact impacts. In the United Kingdom, a new bank is experimenting with guaranteeing a net gain – in part because it’s the right thing to do, but also because it may be more cost effective.
The Green New Deal has won praise for highlighting the upside of meeting the climate challenge, but critics say cap-and-trade will deliver the same benefits without the confusion. In the Chesapeake Bay, a similar debate is playing out on water pollution, and a simple cap seems to support multiple benefits.
Efforts to reduce tropical deforestation are divided into two separate worlds: One that believes that governments need to lead any effort on reducing emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD+), and one that sees a role for private carbon projects. We must unify these worlds to increase the chances to curb deforestation.
Carbon finance can, in theory, help small landowners around the world improve the way they manage their forests by providing that little bit of extra income that can make sustainable forest management pay. In practice,l high transaction costs and low carbon prices have limited uptake – but that’s changing, thanks to new technologies and finance strategies.
We’ve all been there. You try to save money by doing things on the cheap, only to find that “low-cost” solutions can leave expensive messes. It’s a lesson that some US companies are learning the hard way, thanks to tight budgets at a key regulator.
Economists have long agreed that the most effective way to meet the climate challenge is to put a price on greenhouse gas emissions, and a new study from the International Monetary Fund says that price should be $75 per ton by 2030. The detailed analysis, published Thursday, acknowledges that such a price will drive up energy costs associated with fossil fuels, but it concludes that the money could be used to generate billions of new jobs if properly deployed.
Environmental markets have delivered stunning success, but at nowhere near the scale needed to meet the climate, water, and biodiversity challenges. One challenge is Sluggish regulatory responses are partly to blame, and that a new approach called “regulatory sandboxes” might be the answer.
Climate change is finally getting the media attention it deserves, and so is carbon offsetting. But what is carbon offsetting? How does it work? Can you trust it? These are just some of the most frequently-asked questions we encounter on carbon offsetting, and here are some simple, concise answers.
Two years ago, few people outside of the environmental community had heard of “nature-based solutions” to the climate challenge or “green infrastructure,” but both concepts are suddenly being championed around the world and even featured prominently in recent US presidential debates. That awareness, however, won’t mean a thing if we don’t figure out how to pay for them. Will an upcoming summit help?
This story originally appeared in Cheddar. It is republished here as part of Ecosystem Marketplace’s partnership with Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 250 news outlets to strengthen coverage of the climate story.
Nearly a quarter of all the greenhouse gases emitted by man come from the way we manage our forests, farms, and fields, yet the Kyoto Protocol offered little in the way of tools for financing forest conservation. That began to change when developing countries introduced the concept of REDD+ in 2005, at year-end climate talks in Montreal. Here’s our latest installment in the intermittent series, “Forests, Farms, and the Global Carbon Sink”.
This story originally appeared in Rolling Stone. It is republished here as part of Ecosystem Marketplace’s partnership with Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 250 news outlets to strengthen coverage of the climate story.
Climate change is finally getting the attention it deserves, and with the attention comes renewed skepticism about carbon offsetting. Our research into voluntary markets, however, reveals companies are engaging in carbon markets as one part of larger emissions reduction strategies that include energy efficiency measures among other improvements. Here we explore eight common misconceptions associated with carbon offsets.
In 2009, the Paiter-Surui of the Brazilian Amazon became the first indigenous people to save their forest through the use of carbon finance. The project slashed deforestation and jump-started sustainable agriculture projects across the territory, but faced opposition from religious extremists, illegal loggers, and diamond miners.
This story originally appeared in Civil Eats. It is republished here as part of Ecosystem Marketplace’s partnership with Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 250 news outlets to strengthen coverage of the climate story.
Deforestation is increasing around the world, and we need a Marshall Plan for Forests. But who will fund it? In this installment of the series “Shades of REDD+”, we look at two sectors that may soon comprise the largest source of demand for forest carbon credits. Both can be part of the solution, but only if key criteria are met.
This story originally appeared in the Columbia Journalism Review. It is republished here as part of Ecosystem Marketplace’s partnership with Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 250 news outlets to strengthen coverage of the climate story.
The President of the United States can’t repeal a law like the Clean Water Act, but the Trump Administration is going ahead with plans to undermine the CWA by severely limiting the long-evolving rules that underpin it. It’s the latest episode of a saga that we have been covering since early last year.
Deforestation was supposed to be cut in half between 2014 and 2020, with 150 million hectares of land being restored. Instead, deforestation has surged 43 percent, according to a new report released on the eve of a global climate summit in New York.
It’s no coincidence that indigenous and traditional communities control one-third of the world’s remaining tropical forests, for these groups have long managed their forests in ways that provide sustenance without destroying the forest itself. To end deforestation, we must invest in them and their way of life.
Farming and forestry account for nearly a quarter of all the greenhouse gas emissions generated by man, and deforestation of tropical forests accounts for half of this. To end deforestation, we must find solutions to make conservation of forests financially viable, and REDD+ is a key part of that.
Deforestation is a classic “wicked problem” with no easy solutions. REDD+ has been conceived to be the master of this problem. In this new series, we’ll look whether REDD+ has delivered on the early hopes, how it is implemented in countries, what works, what doesn’t – and of course, how it could still become a story of success.
Agriculture, deforestation, and forest fires generate up to 40 percent of all man-made greenhouse gasses, but farmers are only now beginning to play a role in global talks through a process known as the “Koronivia Joint Work on Agriculture”. In this series, we explore the evolution of land use within the global climate apparatus.
Tropical forests are our first line of defense against climate change, and the Tropical Forest Standard creates a blueprint through which industries can offset part of their carbon emissions by paying countries in the tropics to save trees. It could funnel $1 billion towards reducing tropical deforestation in the next 10 years.
Republican lawmakers have been reticent about directly attacking popular laws like the Endangered Species Act and the Clean Water Act, but the Trump Administration has chosen to undermine them by stealth – specifically by making changes to the rules it creates for implementing them. A new change to the Endangered Species Act aims to make the law more business-friendly, but chances are it will only be friendly to a few businesses, like mining and logging.
The latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change on land use and climate change reveals seven important things to take note of on the relationship between forests and climate change.
Ranchers and farmers earn their livelihoods managing land in ways that deliver goods and services the rest of us are willing to pay for. Far too many of them, however, have not yet learned about programs that generate significant new income from their operations, along with clean air, clean water, and biodiversity – healthy ecosystems, which benefit us all.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says we need carbon sinks if we’re to meet the climate challenge, and farmers have the ability to turn forests, fields, and farms into just that. Unfortunately, they’ve been slow to embrace the global apparatuses for meeting the climate challenge, until now. Here’s how that changed, and why it matters.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published its long-waited Special Report on Climate Change and Land this morning. Written by 107 authors drawing on more than 7,000 scientific publications, the report is a complex compendium of scientific knowledge with a simple core message: to end climate change, we must eat less meat and waste less food.
Natural climate solutions are finally beginning to get the kind of media attention they need, but that can be a double-edged chainsaw if certain nuances are lost. We take stock of the last few months’ coverage in our latest edition of the EM Insights Newsletter, which went out this morning.
Our forests, wetlands, urban green spaces, and sustainably-managed farms and ranches provide clean and reliable water for most of the world’s urbanites, yet they are often treated as little more than scenic intervals between cities. To save them, we should view them as real assets, just as valuable as our roads, dams, levees, and wastewater treatment plants, argues Jan Cassen of the Forest Trends Water Initiative.
Natural climate solutions are key to meeting the climate challenge, but scaling them up requires rigorous accounting for the way our management of forests, farms, and fields impacts greenhouse gas emissions. That will be a key focus of year-end climate talks in Santiago, Chile – and of a new global architecture to be unveiled on Monday.
The Accountability Framework aims to provide a global consensus on how to define a forest and how to track the impact that commodity companies have on deforestation the world. Launched in June, the Framework could have major implications for the way we manage our forests, farms, and fields.
Carbon market critiques always seem to ask whether these mechanisms have solved the climate crisis, and the answer is always a decisive “No.” That, however, puts the onus on one mechanism instead of on society and detracts from the real question: namely, “Is there any way to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement without protecting the world’s forests?” This leads to another “No,” but with other implications.
Natural climate solutions can get us one-third of the way to meeting the Paris Agreement’s 2-degree target, but they draw just 3 percent of climate finance. We can change that by developing a new financial architecture that recognizes nature as an asset class, and New Forests’ CEO David Brand says forestry’s evolution as an asset class can inform that development.
Major media are finally waking up to the role that trees can play in slowing and even reversing climate change, and that’s great. Unfortunately, most still seem oblivious to mechanisms emerging to not only plant trees but saving forests and support farmers.
The climate challenge is complex, and so are the solutions emerging for meeting it. Unfortunately, the same sloppy reporting that got us into this mess is now threatening to keep us here, says Ecosystem Marketplace editor Steve Zwick and COTAP founder Tim Whitley.
Utility regulators from a range of US states are questioning the wisdom of investing in new natural gas facilities, which look increasingly risky compared to low-cost wind and solar projects. Here’s a look at the economics behind these decisions.
Hundreds of corporations say they want to reduce their impact on forests, and many actually make good on that claim. Most, however, say haven’t been able to do so because every NGO seems to have its own definition of deforestation. That changed with the arrival of the Accountability Framework two weeks ago, and a Wednesday webinar will explore the role of investors in driving corporate action.
Commitments under the Paris Climate Agreement aren’t yet deep enough to avoid a climate catastrophe, but more and more countries and companies are either contemplating or committing to carbon neutrality by a specific date in the future. A new analysis shows that 16 percent of the global economy could soon be covered by net-zero commitments.
The European Council has failed to put a date on its carbon neutrality pledge after four countries – the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary and Poland – pushed back against the rest of the block. Poland says it will only sign on if it can clearly be compensated for economic losses.
Two weeks of UN climate talks opened today in the former German capital of Bonn, with the 50th meetings of both the Subsidiary Body for Implementation and the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice, as well as a two-day workshop on agriculture within the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the inaugural meeting of the Facilitative Working Group of the local communities and indigenous peoples platform.
Twenty years ago, the IPCC warned that global warming would melt arctic ice, releasing methane that drives up temperatures faster and faster. It’s a nightmare scenario that mainstream media dismissed as something akin to apocalyptic fiction, but now it’s here. Nature-based solutions may still be able to help us avert the worst effects, but are we willing to pay for them?